CHINA HANDED DAUNTING TASK TO BEAT VIETNAM IN 4-SETTER
Bac Ninh, Vietnam, June 11, 2018 – Defending and consecutive 4-time champions China faced a stiff challenge from Vietnam before powering past the host side in dramatic four sets 25-17 22-25 28-26 25-9 to taste their first win at at the Bac Ninh Gymnasium here on Monday.
Xu Luyao charted 20 points for China including 17 kills from 40 attempts, while Che Wenhan contributed 14 points including 12 attacks. Nguyen Thi Bich Tuyen led Vietnam with 20 points from 16 attacks, 2 stuff blocks and 2 ace serves.
China, which beat Russia to reign supreme over the FIVB Women’s U20 World Championship in Mexico in 2017, got off to a brilliant start. Ace spiker Xu Luyao and Che Wenhan tore the Vietnamese defence with their exceptional attacks for the China’s comfortable 25-17 win in the first set.
However, things turned sour for China in the second set when their game was riddled with unforced attacking mistakes, leaving the host team to score many crucial points. Vietnam led 24-22 and needed only one more point to win the set. Hard-attacking Nguyen Thi Bich Tuyen did not let home fans down when she produced a mid-court drop and it went unanswered. Vietnam took the hard-fought set 25-22.
The third set was more thrilling when both sides poured everything to win the set. Vietnam, cheered on lustily by home crowds, took an early 8-3 lead before China fought back heavily to catch the host side at 17-17 and again 20-all. From then on, both took turns leading, but China held their nerves to win the hotly-contested 28-26.
The fourth set turned out to be a totally one-sided battle. China led by a wide margin 7-0, stretched ti to 14-2 and 24-8. The Chinese allowed Vietnam only one more point to capture the easy set 25-9 and match.
“Vietnam played well, especially in the second set, This win means a lot to our team because we had already lost to Japan in our first match. In the previous match against Japan, they played with high speed and we could not match them tactically, but against Vietnam, the host side played a bit slower and we then can cope well with their tactics. We next play Thailand, a team with experienced and skilful players. It should be a tough match for us, but we will try our best,” China head coach Shi Hairong commented.
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